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Your Trusted Employment Partner!
Helping law firms and corporate legal departments in the Washington, DC metropolitan area overcome their staffing challenges in a cost-effective and seamless manner is our ultimate goal. Legal E provides outstanding legal staffing solutions by offering the highest degree of professionalism, integrity and talent-driven human capital. For job seekers, Legal E offers the guidance of our expert team of recruiters and access to the area's top legal jobs through our online Career Portal. No matter what your employment needs are, Legal E is ready at a moment's notice to provide the solution!
ALA Partner of the Week - Client Alerts
LEGAL E EMPLOYMENT PARTNERS
Founded in 2003, Legal E Employment Partners is a premier legal employment service provider and has been recognized for the past four years amongst DC’s top Legal & Litigation Staffing firms by Legal Times Readers Survey. As a certified Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) business, Legal E is dedicated to providing area law firms, corporations and non-profits with highly qualified attorneys and professional staff for contract and direct-hire services.
Along with providing forward-thinking staffing solutions, Legal E is committed to exercising the highest degree of responsible and risk-averse approaches to recent legislation. Legal E’s initiatives are designed to enhance client services and establish ongoing, mutually beneficial partnerships with the business community to include fully compliant practices and systems to substantiate co-employment safeguards.
LOOKING OUT FOR OUR CLIENTS: REGULATION ROUND-UP
- “Ban the Box”
To comply with the recent Fair Criminal Record Screening Act of 2014, also known as, “Ban the Box,” Legal E has removed any inquiries concerning an applicant's criminal history from its job applications. We also exclude any discussions regarding past criminal activity during the initial interview phase and will only conduct a criminal background check after extending a conditional offer of temporary employment. In order to ensure that hiring guidelines related to the employment of individuals with criminal records are consistent with federal, state, and local laws, Legal E encourages its clients to maintain and provide updated and detailed job descriptions which allows for properly conducted, individualized assessments of candidates when necessary. As a standard practice, Legal E adheres to all state and local requirements at the outset of each engagement, during our background check process, and when considering or taking adverse actions against applicants or employees based on criminal history. All members of the Legal E staff have been trained on the appropriate procedures regarding criminal history as it pertains to hiring and separation.
- Safe and Sick Leave Act
Legal E has adopted a responsible and accountable approach to minimize risk to its clients, and is in full compliance with recently amended (adopted and suggested) legislative language in DC’s Accrued Safe and Sick Leave Act of 2008. As a precautionary measure, all temporary employees on Legal E’s payroll are informed of their accruing SSLA leave, which is retroactive to February 22, 2014. As the statute dictates, proper notices and posters regarding employee rights are visibly present in candidate interviewing areas.
- Wage Theft Prevention
Legal E has fully implemented measures to comply with DC’s Amended Wage Theft Prevention Act which includes written notices to all current and newly-hired employees, as required at the time of interview and employment. All written notices are captured and recorded with easy accessibility in an effort to offer assurances of full compliance.
Legal E’s careful examination and proactive policy implementation regarding these regulations is a testament to our pledge to uphold a co-employment partnership standard with our clients. We have applied legally sound practices and risk-averse approaches to ensure that we and our clients are protected. We maintain rigorous systems and safeguards designed to enrich our services and advance value-added partnerships. Serving as a trusted employment partner, Legal E continues to receive and relay regular updates concerning evolving legislation in an effort to offer fully compliant staffing solutions to its clients.
Legal E Honored by Legal Times Readers for Third Consecutive Year
Washington, D.C., December 2, 2014 - Legal E Employment Partners, a leading legal-staffing service provider in the Washington Metropolitan Area, is proud to announce that for a third year running, the company is being recognized amongst DC's "Best Legal/Litigation Support Staffing" firms as reported in the 2014 "Best of LegalTimes" Reader's Ranking survey.
"We are truly honored as one of DC’s ‘Best Legal/Litigation Support Staffing Firms’ for the third consecutive year and we are so grateful to the LegalTimes readers for this recognition, says Jeanette Derby, the president and founder of Legal E. “I applaud the Legal E team and its exceptional talent and endless passion for positive results. We owe many thanks to our loyal client base who have continuously supported and encouraged Legal E Employment Partners and allowed us to demonstrate our expertise in providing exceptional services.”
In the 2014 annual "Best of LegalTimes" Reader Survey over 1,500 Washington, DC area readers cast votes for their favorite vendors in 73 categories. In a recent statement to the legal community, Tom Larranaga, publisher of the National Law Journal and the LegalTimes, said, “’The Best of LegalTimes’ puts control in the hands of end-users, readers of The National Law Journal. It provides a measure of effectiveness and passion for the brands and companies serving the legal industry in D.C.” In addition to "Best Legal/Litigation Support Staffing," which can be found on page 16 of the LegalTimes Reader's Rankings insert of the NLJ’s November 25, 2014 issue, other categories in the survey include: Best E-Discovery Consultant, Best Time and Billing Software, Best Telecommunications Provider, Best Court Reporting Service, Best Document Management Provider, Best PR Firm, etc. To view the entire list of results, please go to http://www.nationallawjournal.com/readers-rankings/.
About Legal E:
Founded in 2003, Legal E has become one of DC's fastest growing legal employment service providers. As a certified Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) business, Legal E is dedicated to providing area law firms, corporations and non-profits with highly qualified attorneys, paralegals and support staff for both contract and direct-hire services. To learn more about Legal E, please visit www.mylegale.com.
Litigation Support: Choosing the Right Partner
By Janice James
As most of us recall from the pre-digital age, law firm litigation departments managed the document review phase of discovery by collecting mounds of paper that was analyzed, paper-indexed and produced to adverse parties. This production of documents was a labor-intensive, mostly manual process staffed by paralegals and junior attorneys. Today, however, the majority of data collected and analyzed comes in the form of electronically stored information such as text messages and emails, and the process of analyzing and producing this data is largely done by contract attorneys.
As the legal profession has evolved into the digital age, the use of sophisticated technology has become a necessary tool in managing this wide swath of electronic data. With that, a new lexicon of terminology has become the norm when referring to the management of this data. The term e-Discovery is used to describe this “information gathering” phase of the litigation process. Within the process, we now refer to the electronically stored information as ESI, and Technology Assisted Review (TAR) and predictive coding refer to the specific method used to review the documents.
Because the discovery phase of any litigation matter is often the most costly portion, the use of sophisticated technology has become a necessary tool in shrinking the volume of data that needs to be reviewed, thus reducing the cost of labor associated with the review. Additionally, recent developments show that judges are endorsing the use of TAR as a more efficient method of analyzing and producing documents.
Since the recession, law firms have continued to reduce staff and very often do not have the manpower to manage the high-volume document review projects. As a result of this trend, the use of document review contract attorneys has become the norm. Many firms rely on litigation support vendors to assist them with part, if not all, of the process. If you are the person tasked with managing the document review portion of your firm’s litigation case, you probably know there are numerous ways to accomplish this monumental and highly important task. Deciding how to manage the review of the data does not have a one-size-fits-all solution. Each case presents its own set of variables that are imperative to recognize. A successful case often hinges on a thorough and well-executed discovery phase.
Once your legal team has decided how it wants to manage the data, identifying and partnering with experts who specialize in eDiscovery is critical. Ideally, it is a good idea to meet with service providers during slower periods. These meetings should include discussions about services, pricing, logistics and even a software demo. Establishing a strong relationship with your service providers ensures a jump-into-action response from them when a need arises. This advanced preparation enables you to provide a well-informed action plan when your firm takes on a new case and the partner needs quick answers. As you prepare to talk to service providers, keep in mind that there are many options available, ranging from fully managed reviews where the services and costs are bundled, to more traditional reviews where services are purchased al la carte and pricing is itemized. There are instances where a fully managed review is more appropriate for the case. Conversely, working with the provider to devise a set of singular services that address the more specific needs of the project with a breakdown of costs, may be a better option. As law firms build their litigation support departments, they are finding that having predictable budgetary control over the document review process can make each case a more profitable venture in the long run.
Legal E Employment Partners has been providing quality traditional and eDiscovery contract attorneys to law firms and in-house legal departments for decades. Legal E has a wide network of talented contractors that can successfully take on basic reviews as well as those requiring high-level expertise or foreign language skills. Additionally, if housing the reviewers in your own space is not an option, Legal E can provide turn-key space in very close proximity to your office within 24 hours.
While it is an exciting time to be involved in law firm technology, it is easy to get overwhelmed by multiple, and often conflicting, sources of information and advice. As a trusted business partner, Legal E’s collective expertise can add assurance to your experience by providing valuable insights on the path forward as well as the appropriate level of resources required to get the job done successfully and efficiently.
Since 2012, Legal E has consistently been recognized by Legal Times Readers as a top Litigation/Legal Staffing firm in the Washington Metropolitan Area. We have helped fill thousands of legal professional positions with over 95% of our business coming from highly satisfied referrals. Legal E’s mission has always been to maintain the highest degree of client satisfaction which is demonstrated daily throughout all our departments including litigation support.
For more information, please contact Janice James at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 202-319-1500.
As the Executive Director at Legal E Employment Partners, Janice James is responsible for managing the Contracts and Special Projects Division. With over 30 years in the industry, Janice has a unique background of law firm human resources management and progressive legal staffing industry expertise. As a former client of Legal E, Janice developed a distinctive appreciation for clients’ expectations as well as a consultative approach regarding staffing challenges -- from the conventional to the extraordinary. Janice is an integral contributor to Legal E’s proven success and recent honors including, Best of Legal Times DC's Best Legal Staffing Service.
Legal E Welcomes Richard Jones Back to the Team
Washington, D.C., October 21, 2014 - Legal E Employment Partners, a premier legal-staffing service provider focused on the Washington Metropolitan Area, is happy to announce that Richard A. Jones has rejoined the organization as a Contracts Division Manager.
Richard eagerly rejoins the company's Contracts Division after devoting several years to broadening his human resources, recruiting, financial coordination and management expertise at a Washington, DC non-profit organization. "We could not be more delighted to have Richard return to the Legal E team," says Jeanette Derby, president and founder of Legal E. "With his vast experience in all facets of recruiting and his dedication to exceed clients' expectations, Richard is an invaluable resource for Legal E!"
Preceding his return to Legal E, Richard was the Human Resources Recruiter and Financial and Administrative Officer at the National Academy of Sciences where he was crucial in the management of a wide range of duties including full-cycle recruiting, development and execution of comprehensive recruiting strategies, organizational budget preparation and analysis, and software and hardware purchasing and execution. Prior to working for the National Academy of Sciences, Richard excelled as the Direct Hire Division Manager in Legal E's Northern Virginia office where he expanded his recruiting successes, management proficiencies, business relationships and client service standards.
"After being out of the legal recruiting for a few years, I am excited for the opportunity to reengage with the legal community and work within such a team-oriented culture," says Jones. "Many years ago, I worked as an intern for Jeanette while I was in college. Later, when I was a law firm Office Manager, I sought out Legal E's services to fill positions for my firm. From that experience, I was so impressed with the quality and integrity Jeanette instills in Legal E's client and candidate relations and service offerings, I joined Legal E as a recruiter and quickly was promoted to Direct Hire Division Manager. Throughout the years, I have admired the entire Legal E team for the positive impact they have made in the legal community and I am honored to be a part of it once again."
As the Manager of Legal E's Contracts Division, Richard will be working alongside Janice James, Executive Director, in the company's Washington DC office. His major focus areas include, but are not limited to, paralegals, administrative support and IT staff.
About Legal E:
Founded in 2003, Legal E is DC's fastest growing legal employment service provider and has been recognized for the past three years as one of DC's top Legal/Litigation Staffing firms by Legal Times Readers Survey. As a certified WBENC business, Legal E is dedicated to providing area law firms, corporations and non-profits with highly qualified attorneys, paralegals and support staff for both contract and direct-hire services. To learn more about Legal E, please visit www.mylegale.com.
Understanding Staffing Agencies
Business Partner Spotlight: Understanding Staffing Agencies Economics
By Jeanette Derby
For the second consecutive year, Legal E is very happy to be recognized as one of DC's best staffing providers according to the Readers’ Survey of Legal Times. It gives us great pride and inspiration to be honored for all of our hard work on behalf of the local legal community and we remain hopeful for the same success in the coming years for Legal E and for all staffing agencies specializing in the legal profession.
With experience in the legal staffing industry spanning four decades and four recessions, this economic recovery is the most unusual and perplexing I have witnessed. Though there are many contradictory anecdotes of that time period, I can only go by my own experience. Legal E was negatively effected in 2009 by the economic downturn yet we bounced back quickly in early 2010 with contract placements and soon after came more direct hire opportunities. Reacting to our rapid growth and need for more staff and space, we opened our DC office in the Spring of 2010. As a trusted partner of our loyal client-base for many years, we understand that law firms must conserve staffing dollars by initially searching for candidates without the use of an agency. However, we also know that firms benefit greatly from the services provided by agencies in order to supplement their in-house efforts, expedite a difficult search, and even save money for their clients such as with hiring contract attorneys for document reviews. Client retention is about adding value. Law firms that take advantage of the contract-to-hire model, which often offers a “no fee” option after a set amount of hours, can show that adding value to the client relationship is a top priority. Agencies such as Legal E are happy to offer this service; however, at the end of the day, it may surprise many to know that it is not profitable for the agency. It has been my experience over the years that many misconceptions exist regarding staffing agency economics and how our industry makes a profit.
Staffing agencies are not taking in immense profits from their contract hourly business. The reality is quite to the contrary. Agencies often operate on the same profit margins for decades while operational costs continually increase due to escalating regulatory costs, multi-jurisdiction taxes, typically the highest unemployment % rates in multiple jurisdictions, and unemployment benefit extensions. Legal E, for example, often experiences unemployment tax fees as high as 50% of what the contract employee has earned in gross wages while working through Legal E. When a contract employee’s assignment ends, it is considered a “layoff” by the multi-state unemployment offices; therefore, benefits are typically approved. Considering all contract positions are subject to end at some point, staffing agencies are usually responsible for funding part, or all, of the employee’s unemployment benefits for those that file unemployment claims. This leads to agencies frequently paying the highest available unemployment rates for each of the area’s jurisdictions. As a consequence, a growing percentage of temporary assignments become unprofitable to the agency’s bottom line. In addition, the staffing industry, largely made up of small businesses, is being faced with the complex task of navigating the new and ever-changing healthcare mandates (to include coverage of temporary employees who work for multiple agencies) which will likely prove to be a serious cost and administrative burden.
In some cases, agencies, traditionally dedicated to legal, have branched out to attract a non-legal client base such as federal and local governments, corporations, associations, and non-profits. The effort to adapt to the changing economics of law firms has an added advantage as law firms look toward their corporate clients for inspiration with regard to office culture, organizational structure and hiring practices. For decades, the trend in law firms was to only consider traditional legal/law-firm experienced candidates for staff and management opportunities. More recently, a rising trend is to not only consider, but actively pursue non-legal staff and management candidates who can provide innovative ideas and processes born out of a corporate paradigm. Many law firms find that in-depth legal experience is not always indicative of success for their evolving needs and typically non-legal candidates are the more economical choice.
For several years, Legal E has been serving the non-legal business community and recognizes the merging of industries including staff and management candidates. To acquire a full appreciation of a multitude of industries, Legal E has made a concerted effort to sponsor corporate-based associations, including the educational goals of their members, in order to gain knowledge of best practices and universally expand the expertise of our recruiters. Understanding how other industries approach staffing and restructuring has been an enlightening learning experience for all of us.
As a supporter of ALA’s Capital Chapter since the 1980's, I have personally witnessed many changes that have been organic and extremely beneficial. As recipients of Legal Times Best of Legal and Litigation Staffing for the past few years, we are equally honored to support the educational initiatives of ALA Capital Chapter. Growth and educational advancement are the best examples of a reciprocal, results-oriented business community and we at Legal E are always grateful for the opportunity to contribute to these efforts.
Jeanette Derby, President of Legal E – Employment Partners, has specialized in legal staffing for well over 30 years. Throughout her career, Jeanette has been responsible for five successful start-up ventures in DC’s legal staffing industry. As an active supporter of ALA’s Capital Chapter since the mid-1980s, Jeanette is a sought after thought-leader and presenter on a myriad of human resources topics and legal staffing trends. In addition to receiving 2012 and 2013 DC’s Best of Legal Times awards for Litigation/Legal Staffing, Legal E is 100% woman-owned and WBENC certified. Jeanette attributes Legal E’s continued success to her amazing management team and staff in the company’s Washington, DC and Northern VA offices.
Award News Update
LEGAL E is pleased to announce the following: